By Joseph Zeballos-Roig, Business Insider
Under the proposal, a $1,000 check would be sent to every adult in America.
“While expansions of paid leave, unemployment insurance, and SNAP benefits are crucial, the check will help fill the gaps for Americans that may not quickly navigate different government options,” the plan read.
The proposal also called to increase Pell Grant amounts awarded to students to ease their financial burden from the coronavirus and deferring student loans.
Romney’s striking proposal to send $1,000 checks echoed previous actions undertaken by the last Republican president, George W. Bush. The Romney plan, however, doesn’t appear to add extra money for people with children as Bush did.
Just before the financial crisis in 2008, the Bush administration sent $600 checks to individual tax filers, $1,200 for couples and an additional $300 a child for families as part of its $168 billion stimulus package.
Two House Democrats, Reps. Ro Khanna and Tim Ryan, also introduced a bill on Friday that would send a one-time check between $1,000 to $6,000 to everyone in the US earning below $65,000.
The idea of sending checks doesn’t appear to be on the table for the Trump administration so far. President Trump has instead sought a massive payroll tax cut until the end of the year, but that hasn’t gained significant traction among Republican and Democratic lawmakers.
Many economists are urging Congress to send checks immediately in an effort to ramp up people’s spending and deliver a needed jolt to an economy battered by the coronavirus.
Businesses around the nation have closed their doors, causing workers in hard-hit industries to increasingly worry about making ends meet, particularly in the service sector.
That’s leading many people to abruptly cut back on their spending, heightening fears that a recession is already underway.
Jason Furman, a top economist during the Obama administration, laid out a similar plan earlier this month to send $1,000 checks to everyone in the US. Other experts like Claudia Sahm, the director of Macroeconomic Policy at the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, also called to send people cash right away.
“This would a critical floor of social insurance for hundreds of millions of Americans and would help the economy rebound more quickly when we are past the virus lockdown phase,” Furman said on Twitter about Romney’s proposal to send checks.
Thrilled to see @MittRomney proposing $1,000 checks. This would a critical floor of social insurance for hundreds of millions of Americans and would help the economy rebound more quickly when we are past the virus lockdown phase. https://t.co/Im14PzsYpf
— Jason Furman (@jasonfurman) March 16, 2020
This article originally appeared in Business Insider.